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Bloom Box Announcement: UPDATES As Bloom Energy Unveils Fuel Cell Technology

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Bloom Energy unveiled their much anticipated fuel cell Wednesday. The secretive California start-up released details on the Bloom Box this afternoon at the eBay Headquarters in San Jose, CA.

Bloom Energy founder K.R. Sridhar spoke, along with former Secretary of State and Bloom Energy board member Colin Powell.

Bloom Energy claims the Bloom Box will revolutionize clean energy technology and says it could even alter people's dependency on traditional power grids.

Check back here for live updates.

1:05 PM ET: Powell is off stage, and Sridhar returns to wrap it up and announce a tour for the press, Engadget reported.

1:00 PM ET: Colin Powell on why he supports the Bloom server, from CNET's live blog:

Once people move up out of poverty they want things that consume energy. Homes, cars, etc. ... We want people to move up. So you take economic growth, you then look at the energy demand it places on the existing systems. And then you look at the impact on the environment...all those three things are connected & you can't separate them out.

Bloom seemed to be a product that matched all these needs.

12:55 PM ET: The final, highly anticipated keynote speaker, Colin Powell, is announced, CNET reports.

12:51 PM ET: Video rolls. The Bloom server has the backing of NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg and California Senator Dianne Feinstein.

Bloomberg, from Engadget's live blog:

Make no mistake, when we look at Bloom, we are looking at the future of business, economy, and America.

12:43 PM ET: Cox's James Kennedy, from CNET's live blog:

We need to reduce our energy and carbon footprint. We were able to reduce 10% very quickly just via conservation. But getting beyond that was really difficult. Has 4 units at KTVU in San Francisco. It's been working for over a month now. We've produced energy we need for 70% of the facility.

12:31 PM ET: John Donahoe of eBay, Bill Simon of Walmart, Brian Kelly of Coca-Cola, and Google's Larry Page are on stage, Engadget reported.

"It was almost too good to be true," Donahoe said.

12:30 PM ET: Sridhar concludes his speech and introduces a panel of representatives from Bloom Energy's customers, which include Google, Walmart, eBay and Bank of America, CNET reported. Venture capitalist John Doerr will be moderating the panel.

12:25 PM ET: The three key major value propositions of the Bloom server are its "lower energy costs, clean power, and reliable power," Sridhar said, nearing the end of his speech.

The first value proposition is the 3-5 year payback period, and fixed energy prices for the next ten years, Mashable reported.

Secondly, the carbon footprint is 50% cleaner than the grid and 100% renewable.

Lastly, it provides power around the clock (24/7/365). If a box or unit has to be fixed, it will still generate power, without affecting the rest of the unit.

12:22 PM ET: Sridhar reveals the Bloom energy server, which is mysteriously covered with a black tarp, CNET reports. Beneath the tarp, behold! A giant box. "It's my baby, isn't she beautiful?" Sridhar says.

12:20 PM ET: Sridhar, holding a stack of fuel cells, compares the Bloom Box to a server, Engadget reports:

We'd prefer you call it a Bloom energy server ... Like servers, when you need more, you add as clusters.

12:16 PM ET: Sridhar explains that the Bloom Box can operate in two ways. From CNET's live blog:

It can convert electricity and store it, so that it can hook up to a home server to power you ... This won't be ready for 10 years though.

12:15 PM ET: Sridhar explains the flexibility of using fuel cell technology. Engadget reports:

We can use a variety of materials... this fuel cell can take any of those fuels, and because of the unique chemistry, use that to produce electricity without the need for chemical plants that are complex that need to process the fuel. The fuel cell does all that for us. That's the uniqueness.

12:08 PM ET: Sridhar on the core of Bloom Energy's technology, from CNET's live blog:

The fuel cell--yes folks we did not invent this ... What had not been done was clean energy that was affordable ... The core of our technology. It's sand ... It's plentiful. Cheap.

12:04 PM ET: Sridhar on finding a new way of approaching energy, from Engadget's live blog:

Way before we had to confront environmental issues associated with this, the geopolitical issues that we'd face was a very big deal. That was not acceptable. You can't conserve your way out of this problem, you can't drill your way out of this problem... we simply had to find a different way. ... Look at computers. Telephones. As they became portable and affordable, the were more adopted.

12:00 PM ET: Sridhar explains his past as a rocket scientist at NASA, when he was trying to "make Mars our second home," CNET reported:

While I was dreaming about Mars, historically unprecedented things have happened on earth. The poor coming out of poverty wanted more of everything--more resources, water, energy. They have a right to this.

11:59 AM ET: Sridhar is up to the podium, CNET reported.

11:54 AM ET: Schwarzenegger is speaking. From CNET's live blog:

Schwarzenegger: 160 yrs ago people flocked to California for the gold rush. Same spirit is still alive and can be seen as Bloom Energy. Bloom is 60% cleaner than coal.

From Mashable's live blog:

Arnold has proposed a law to exempt green technologies from the sales tax, which would cover Bloom Energy. "Jobs, jobs, jobs, right now."

11:50 AM ET: K.R. Sridhar is out, CNET reported. Sridhar announces that California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger will be making a surprise appearance.

11:30 AM ET: Bloom Energy's website has gone live.

Around the Web

 Live blog: Bloom Box press conference | Web Crawler - CNET News

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The Bloom Box: An Energy Breakthrough? - 60 Minutes - CBS News

Is K.R. Sridhar's 'magic box' ready for prime time? - Fortune ...

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